There’s nothing worse than being stuck in an unproductive meeting. The leader starts the meeting late. Stragglers interrupt the flow. The purpose or the agenda is unclear, and the leader chases disjointed topics.
When the session ends, you feel like an hour of your time was wasted.
Over the past 40 years, I have learned how to run an effective meeting from leading and observing thousands of client meetings. Here are seven ways to facilitate highly productive meetings.
Time is money, obviously, and a one-hour group meeting with six people costs your organization six hours, not one as some might think.
Using guidelines and expected outcomes also helps reduce meeting fatigue. A recent Stanford University study claims that hundreds of millions of virtual meetings occur daily, millions more if you add in-person meetings. With so many meetings to attend, a poorly run meeting intensifies participant fatigue, while effective facilitation motivates people to engage and enjoy the process.
Meetings can be the best – or worst – use of everyone’s time. It comes down to who’s leading the meeting and how effectively it’s facilitated.
Raleigh, North Carolina-based Advance Auto Parts opened its first store in Springfield; Natural Grocers made its Springfield debut; and a business owner with experience in the insurance, financial planning and digital marketing fields entered the restaurant industry.
Marc Thornsberry, a Senior Engineer at CJW, says he joined the company after working in the public sphere. He says CJW had a ton of experience working with the community, and putting their customer's and clients.
Sandra Smart, a technology and commercialization specialist, shares helpful advice and cautionary tips about the importance of tracking cash flow for new or established businesses. Smart works with tech entrepreneurs and hosts training workshops through the Missouri SBDC at Missouri State University's efactory.
Michael Smith and Chris Sawyer, COO and CEO of Next Level Solutions respectively, discuss how they keep their remote teams and offices in and out of country on the same page. Next Level Solutions was ranked #1 in the Springfield Business Journal's 2021 Dynamic Dozen.
John Oke-Thomas, architect and co-founder of minorities in business, responds to the accusation that minority businesses are only successful because of the priority they have received in lending. He says that if a business uses a loan well, it shows their worth.
Sandra Smart, a technology and commercialization specialist, shares tips for entrepreneurs who are ready to seek funding. Some of her tips apply broadly; some target technology industry businesses. Smart works with tech entrepreneurs and startups, and hosts training workshops through the Missouri SBDC at Missouri State University's efactory.
Hollie Elliott discusses common misconceptions about locating your business in a small town. She says that there are a lot of benefits that people may not consider.
Drawing on his own experience dynamically evolving his company and business model, Jim Meinsen discusses when and how you might need to draw on new technology. Jim and Debbie Meinsen are co-owners of TCI Graphics in Springfield.
John Oke-Thomas, longtime Springfield architect, discusses his philosophy on architecture. He says that future historians will be focused on the sustainability of our contemporary architecture.
Erin Hedlun, director of marketing and communications at Evangel University, says compassion is an important job skill. Hedlun says it is a component of what makes a leader.
Rachel Barks, owner of Artistree Pottery, talks about the concepting that went behind the aesthetic of the business.